We’re profiling every player on the Celtics roster before training camp begins. Today it’s Kevin Garnett.
6-feet-11-inches, 253 pounds, 36-years-old
2012/13 salary: $12.47 million
Strengths: Garnett is one of the best power forwards to ever play the game. His offensive game is as polished as any other big man in the NBA (OK so Pau Gasol might be more polished at this point, but that’s a tough argument to make around here). Garnett can still fill it up, and he’s one of the league’s best interior defenders in a team concept. He’s also intense, dedicated, and a leader by example.
Room to improve: Garnett could be a better rebounder and one-on-one defender (he’s tremendous in a team scheme). This isn’t an area to improve so much, but Garnett’s stamina has diminished as he’s gotten older. He plays himself so ragged that no other human can match his level, but those stretches have gotten shorter by necessity.
Projections for 2012/13: 68 games, 17.5 points, 7.9 rebounds, 30.1 minutes
Outlook: Garnett’s resurgence was the single biggest reason the Celtics made it to Game 7 of the conference finals last season. Because of that, the Celtics will try and preserve Garnett throughout the season. Still, I think the move to center will keep the increase in his scoring average, while a decrease of a minute or two per game will bring the rebounds down a bit. Some minor maintenance injuries will require some games off, but the Celtics will gladly take that over something more.